Archive for March, 2012

Officer Meeting 3/27/12 – Minutes

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Officers’ Meeting

Agenda & Minutes 3/27/12

 1. Review and finalize proposed by-laws changes. 

 Treasurer reviewed final proposal for by-laws changes to dues structure.  The officers endorsed the proposal.  Next steps:  send by-laws proposal to garden membership, post on website, and remind members about voting status and quorum.

 2.  Finalize, if possible, committee chairs with thoughts on “bucket chairs”. 

 Vice Chair (VC) reviewed committees without chairs – flower committee and fundraising committee.  VC has reached out to members of the committees regarding the chair position.  Officers agreed to set a deadline for filling these positions and the need to review garden members’ interest in these committees if chairs go unfilled.  Will be briefly discussed at next garden meeting.

 3.  Chair asked each officer to set goals for the next year.  This discussion was tabled until the next meeting. 

 4.  Assigning tasks/division of labor.

 Row captains are responsible for initial gardener issues and working with VC on row inspections.  Row captains also volunteer, as needed, to lead cleanups. 

 VC will coordinate Garden Council as needed and will coordinate committees and “buckets” as needed.

 Chair will coordinate officer meetings, assist in coordinating cleanups, assist with committees as needed. 

 Task lists for clean ups will be posted in the garden shed.  Gardeners may note items “to be done at cleanup” on the list (with name & date).  This list will be used at the cleanup.  Chair will help coordinate with whoever is leading cleanup.

 5.  Linda Witt requested Libbyfest become an annual event and she’s volunteered to co-ordinate.  Officers request that this event might also include a donation can to help subsidize a gardener’s plot if needed (e.g. home crisis, financial emergency, etc.). 

 6.  Set up regular meetings. 

Officers agreed to meet the Tuesday 2 weeks prior to garden meetings at 7pm. 

 7.  Communication of officer decisions/meetings with gardeners.

Officers agreed to post minutes of their meetings on the website for all garden members to review.  Officers also decided copies of important garden-wide emails should also be posted at the website for member review.

Southwark/Queen Village Community Garden By-Laws, revised June 2012

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden, EST. 1976
311 – 333 Christian Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Mailing Address:
Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden
c/o Queen Village Neighbors Association
P.O. Box 63763, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Mission Statement:
Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden (SWQVCG), created in 1976, is a space for public gardening, creating and connecting communities and nurturing bio-diversity. Southwark / Queen Village Community Garden is managed as a gardening park by the Neighborhood Gardens Association / A Philadelphia Land Trust and by the gardeners.


A. Each plot must have at least one Voting Member, who:
1. has one vote on any matter coming before the membership for a vote; and
2. must attend 5 meetings and 5 cleanups (or equivalent).
B. Each plot may have one assisting gardener. If the assisting gardener wishes to be a Voting Member, he or she must fulfill all the obligations of a Voting Member.
C. Eligibility for Membership
1. First priority will be given to Queen Village Residents: Delaware River to 6th Street; south side Lombard St. to the north side Washington Avenue.
2. The Garden Chair(s) maintain the waiting list of applicants for membership. Order on the waiting list is determined first by residency and then by date of application.
3. Applicants are accepted according to plot availability. Current gardeners have first preference to apply for a vacant plot. No household may have more than one plot. The Garden Chair(s) will maintain the plot list of assigned plots. Only the Garden Chair(s), after consultation with the Officers, may assign or transfer plots, and should do so based on the expected commitment of the applicants to the goals of the community garden and ability to meet ongoing membership requirements.
D. Membership Requirements
1. In addition to the requirements described above, each Voting Member is required to:
a. sign the SWQVCG By-laws
b. if required, sign the Neighborhood Gardening Association (NGA) Agreement,
c. register for and perform two weeks of watering duty,
d. join and actively participate in a Committee, and
e. meet the Garden Criteria and General Rules described below.
2. Each Member is to renew his/her membership annually at the March meeting.
E. Membership Fees
1. The purpose of membership fees is to pay for the total annual “basic” costs which include, but are not limited to, water and electric bills, irrigation system operation and maintenance, trash bags and mosquito control.
2. The garden members assigned to each voting plot are responsible for paying membership fees for their plot. The membership fees are to be paid at the March garden meeting or as soon afterwards as possible but no later than April 1 or at another date arranged with the garden officers.
3. Each fall, the membership fees for the following year will be determined by taking the current year’s basic costs less the year’s fundraising proceeds designated for “general funds” and divided by the number of voting plots in the garden. The fees will be reviewed and approved by the garden officers and reported at the November garden meeting.
4. It is the intention of the garden membership that dues shall not be a barrier to garden membership.
5. A $2,000 “rainy day” fund will be kept in reserve for unexpected costs.

1. Meetings are held on the second Monday of every month from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm, except the months of December, January and February. If the second Monday needs to be cancelled, the meeting will take place on the second Tuesday of the month.
2. Location of meetings October through March will be at an indoor site; from April through September, meetings will be held in the Garden unless the Chair(s) moves the meeting because of inclement weather.
3. A Voting Member who attends fewer than five meetings per season, March through November, will receive one warning.
4. Any Voting Member unable to attend at least five meetings due to issues outside of his/her control must inform his/her Row Captain.
5. The Officers are to give notice and provide an agenda, noting the matters on which a vote will be taken, at least two days before a Meeting.
6. The members who have a right to vote who are present at any regularly scheduled meeting will constitute a quorum, except for amending the By-laws, when 50% of the Voting members must be present to form a quorum.
7. Except for amending the By-laws, all issues to be voted on shall be decided by a simple majority of the Voting Members present at the meeting in which the vote takes place (Ex.: If 20 Voting Members are present a simple majority constitutes 11). The vote of two-thirds of the Voting Members present is required to amend the By-laws, assuming a quorum is present.

1. Regular garden clean-ups are held the Saturday following a garden meeting. Rain dates for clean-ups will be Sunday following a garden meeting. Clean-ups require two hours of work in the common areas as directed by the clean-up leader and excludes any time spent working on the gardener’s own plot.
2. For those who cannot complete the required regular clean-ups, a task list and sign up sheet is posted in the garden shed. Members are to record his/her completed tasks and time to be counted towards the regular clean-up requirement on the sign up sheet. Two hours of tasks equal one regular clean-up.
a. A member who attends fewer than the required regular clean-ups and does not complete equivalent task time will receive one warning.
b. Any Member unable to attend the required number of regular clean-ups or complete equivalent task time due to issues outside of his/her control must inform his/her Row Captain.

1. Officers are elected to a two-year term at the March meeting. The holding of an office is limited to two consecutive terms.
2. The officers are: Chair(s), Vice-Chair, Treasurer, Corresponding Secretary and Recording Secretary.

1. One or two gardeners per row will be appointed by the Chairs to serve as Row Captain(s) for a term of two-years.
2. Row Captain duties include:
a. Making sure each gardener on his/her row keeps his/her garden plot free of weeds and debris and paths are clear and weed free.
b. Making sure no items are stored in any path (except watering cans).
c. Notifying gardeners in your row of special clean-ups and other events.
d. Notifying gardeners in your row without email service of all meetings, clean-ups, and other activities by phone.
e. Resolving gardeners concerns and grievances or bringing them to the attention of the officers if unable to resolve.
f. Coordinating and leading one clean-up per season.
g. Reporting the general health of the row to the Chair(s) on a regular basis.

1. The officers, Row Captains, and the immediate past Garden Chair(s) will constitute the Garden Council.
2. The Garden Council will serve as the By-laws Committee to consider proposed changes to the by-laws. The Committee will present its recommendations on the By-laws to the Members. Only the Members can approve changes to the By-laws.

1. Each garden plot must be cleared and planting begun no later than May 1 or the plot will be forfeited.
2. Each Voting Member is responsible for mulching, weeding and clearing his/her plot and the paths surrounding it. Each Voting Member must chip the paths bordering his/her plot.
3. Each Member is responsible for maintaining the ‘health’ of his/her plot by removing noxious or invasive plants, sickly plant material, rotting plant materials and/or pest infested plants. Any Voting Member receiving notice from his/her row captain, the Inspection Committee or Garden Council of unhealthy conditions in his/her plot must clear the unhealthy conditions within five days of receiving the notice. Plots with serious infestation may be cleared at the discretion of the Garden Council or Inspection Committee.
4. Absence: Any Voting Member unable to maintain his/her plot due to circumstances beyond his/her control must inform the Garden Chair(s). A Voting Member who requires a temporary substitute gardener who is not a garden member must request permission from the Garden Chair(s). Temporary gardeners must abide by the garden By-laws and the NGA agreement.
5. Gardening activity and plant growth must be restricted to each individual’s plot.
6. The Garden Council will determine if any of the common gardens produce, materials, or supplies may be donated or sold. All proceeds will be turned over to the treasury for benefit of the garden only.
7. Harvesting of Common Areas: The Chair of the Orchard Committee will determine the harvest dates of all common area fruiting plants and will notify the membership of harvesting day(s). Each gardener may pick only enough fruit for a sampling. Please don’t be greedy.

1. Consists of at least three members of the Garden Council, including a minimum of one current officer.
2. The Committee will conduct inspections in May, June, July and August to ensure that all plots and aisles are clean, healthy, and free of weeds, infestation, and hazards. Additional inspections may be conducted at the Garden Council’s discretion.
3. The Committee will notify the appropriate Row Captains of plots or aisle areas that do not meet criteria and the Row Captains will notify the members whose plots and aisle areas require remediation. Members are expected to reply immediately to such a notice and make arrangements to have the plot and aisle area back to standards within five days of the notice. Failure to comply within five days without adequate excuse, as determined in the discretion of the Chair(s), will result in a warning.

1. As part of the community, gardeners are expected to participate in garden activities and preparation for special events, such as: the PHS City Garden Contest, Fundraisers, Festivals, Holiday Party, Special Projects, and Fall BBQ.
2. Grievances should be brought to the attention of the Row Captain. The Row Captain will attempt to resolve grievances and will convey unresolved grievances to the officers for resolution.
3. Removal or harvesting of any beneficial creatures from the garden is prohibited. No digging of worms.
4. Use of non-organic or synthetic pesticides or herbicides by individual gardeners is not permitted. The Garden Council encourages and prefers gardeners to utilize organic and natural gardening methods.
5. No one may climb trees except at the direction of the Orchard Committee.
6. Gardeners may not damage, prune, harvest, pull out weeds or plants or tend to other gardener’s plot unless specifically invited. Failure to comply with this Rule may result in loss of membership in the Garden. A dismissal requires a majority vote of the Garden Council.
7. Guests and children, must be accompanied by a Voting Member or assisting gardener and obey all garden by-laws.
8. Pets brought into the garden must be restrained on a leash, kept out of plots and the person responsible must clean up after the pet.
9. Illegal activities within the garden, by a Member or his/her guests, will result in the Member’s immediate expulsion.
10. Violation of any of the garden by-laws will result in a warning.
11. Any gardener who does not satisfy the Membership Requirements or receives two warnings in a season is eligible for dismissal. A dismissal requires a majority vote of the Garden Council.
Southwark Queen Village Community Garden
I have read the by-laws governing Southwark Queen Village Community Garden.
I will abide by the by-laws, rules and regulations of the garden. I understand failure to do so may lead to termination of my membership. I understand that if I give up my membership or my membership is terminated, I must return my key in a timely manner.
Signature: _________________________________________________________
Please print clearly
Name:_____________________________________________ Date:__________
Plot No.:____________
Address :__________________________________________________________
Telephone: ( )____ – ______
Email: ____________________________________________________________
□ I do not use email. Please have my row captain contact me when necessary.
T o be filled out by a representative of the Garden Council
Amount of Dues Paid: __________ Date: __________
Representative’s Initials:________

Minutes for 12 March 2012 (6:30 pm at Settlement)

Monday, March 12th, 2012

1. Introduction – Welcome and general update on what’s blooming and happening in the garden.

2. Approval of minutes from November 2011 meeting.

3. State of the Garden – Carolyn reviewed achievements of the past two years:

a. Compost toilet
b. Honey house
c. Compost bins

Looking forward – the big projects are finished. Energy and emphasis will be directed towards developing a budget and further fostering and developing the garden community.

4. Treasurer’s Report – Currently $5,483 in the bank account.

a. Revenue during the period 11/15/11 through 3/12/12:

i. $2,500 from a Philadelphia Activities grant
ii. $200 donation from neighbors
iii. Heifer donations for 2011: $160. $170 was sent to Heifer International.
iv. $520 received from Thom for the Honey House

b. Expenses during the period 11/15/12 through 3/12/12:

i. $225 for Old Swedes Hall rental for the Christmas Party
ii. $1650 PECO
iii. Additional expense related to tree care, NGA donation, Apiary costs, trash bags etc.

5. Introduction of New Gardeners & Plot Assignments

6. Winter Activities – Carolyn thanked those who helped with snow removal and gave a brief description of winter in the garden.

7. Fundraising/Plant Sale – Discussion tabled for a later date.

8. Clean-up on Saturday March 19 – Cindy and Carolyn to coordinate. Clean-up to go from 9-11. Everyone was reminded of the obligation to actually participate in the clean-ups and not simply sign-in and go to work in personal plots.

9. Election of New Officers – Jed introduced the slate of officers and they were unanimously approved. The new Board includes:

a. Cyndi L – Chairwoman
b. John V – Vice-Chair
c. Deirdre – Treasurer
d. Barbara M – Corresponding Secretary
e. Elizabeth C – Recording Secretary

10. Discussion of budgeting process and dues – Deirdre presented the findings and recommendations of the Dues Committee which met during the winter recess.

a. Currently the garden is running a deficit. Basic annual expenses are approximately $2,700 and dues total $825 for the year 2012.

b. Recommendations:

i. Increasing dues either mid-season 2012 or for 2013, and maintaining a two-tier structure.

ii. Establishing and maintaining a “rainy day fund” in the amount of $2,000 to provide a cushion to cover unexpected expenses.

c. Other considerations – items/activities such as the BBQ, Plant Sale and the Bees need to be supported through fundraising and other sources of income.

d. The slides from the Dues Committees’ presentation are available on the Garden’s website.

e. Increasing annual dues is a two step process. 1) the bylaws must be amended to reflect the new structure; 2) the membership must vote to pass the proposed change. An outline of the proposed bylaws changes will be presented at the April meeting.

Some questions were voiced about voting rights. More specifically, who votes and how co-gardeners/assistant gardeners are defined. The discussion was tabled for a later meeting.

11. Q&A

a. Karyl to coordinate ordering salt hay. An e-mail will be sent out with ordering instructions.

b. The Garden received a $5,000 grant from the SWQV Community Association for the Honey House.

c. There is some space in the Honey House for anyone who might have a small project to work on. See Carolyn if you’re interested to get a key.